When it comes to children, the role of antidepressants has been much debated. With incidents of suicide attempts (unsuccessful and successful) in kids taking these antidepressants has generated much concern. While some specialists stand by the argument that therapy alone does not help, it might be useful to be aware of the guidelines FDA has set for administering antidepressants in children.
It is advised that medications be prescribed only in severe cases, but not in cases where the child is recovering from loss of a loved one, domestic violence, or conflicts at school. Medications may deter effective treatment of depression by covering the actual cause of depression. If such external situations can be resolved, it might help treat the child’s depression.
Whatever you do, deciding about prescriptions must be only after you consult the therapist. Your child, you, and the doctor must all be taken into consideration when making this decision. Explore alternatives if there are available, and do not hesitate to ask the doctor in case of doubt.
Children on antidepressants must be closely monitored. Your child will need your constant support throughout the therapy.